FROM Mark Leno
Is California Facing a Financial Armageddon? Following yesterday’s special election , Governor Schwarzenegger was scheduled back in Sacramento this afternoon to talk to legislative leaders about what to do now. State Treasurer Bill Lockyer says the state will need to borrow to pay its bills. To establish credit, it will need a new budget no later than mid-July. We speak with State Senators Jeff Denham, Republican from the Central Valley, and Democrat Mark Leno of San Francisco, who sits on the Budget Committee.
Money and Power in Sacramento Lobbyists outnumber legislators in Sacramento by 8 to 1. Lobbying is a growth industry. In 1975, interest groups hiring lobbyists numbered 682; now it's 2,365. Since 1990, lobbyist spending has risen from $193 million to $550 million. Another reason that lobbyists get what they want is that they've been there a lot longer.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?